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life-changing Lotto jackpot a whopping €19m record in tonight's draw

The jackpot has been capped, but more players will win bigger sums as a result due to flow-down of cash

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Retailers and the National Lottery have said the record Lotto jackpot over €19m has drawn first-time players in search of winning the life-changing sum.

The jackpot has rolled over since June of this year and the maximum amount it can reach has now been achieved at €19,060,800.

“We’re getting people that have never played the Lotto in their lives now taking an interest due to the largest-ever jackpot and it’s generating a lot of excitement, it’s brilliant,” Fran Whearty of the National Lottery said.

Mr Whearty explained that once the Lotto hits a new all-time high it is capped, but this is good news for most players, he explains.

“It’s common practice for lottery jackpots to be capped around Europe and in America. Nineteen million is a massive amount of money and it’s even above the base level of the Euromillions jackpot. In this case, it’s guaranteed to be won by someone in Ireland, be it a single winner, a syndicate or multiple winners.

“Because of the cap, it gives the opportunity to more players to win bigger prizes due to the flow-down of prize money. You’re bringing in more players and giving them the opportunity to win big prizes. It’s not just the jackpot winner that benefits from the maximum payout, but it’s all other prize tiers too”.

He said that due to the inflation of all prize tiers, the payout for matching five numbers and the bonus ball could exceed €1.5m tonight.

Retailers have notified the National lottery that unnecessary queues are forming towards the deadline of the draw in the last few weeks as the jackpot swelled to record levels and people are being encouraged to buy their tickets early.

“People were queuing at 7:30pm to get their ticket and we are looking to avoid this due to social distancing guidelines. If you’re playing, we’re asking people to buy early as the last thing we want are queues in shops,” Fran said.

A positive benefit of the added interest in the Lotto is that many good causes will receive much needed funding.

Fran said that the charitable arm of the National Lottery is often overlooked and over €32m has been raised for charities and good causes since the Lotto jackpot was last won.

“Since the very start of the roll, it has generated in excess of €32.5m for good causes and we think it will nearly top €35m after tonight’s draw.

“So this weekend could see Ireland’s record National Lottery jackpot winner and nearly €40m raised for good causes,” Fran said.

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